MY WORD: Postal service for Bagdad is important

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By Austin Redmon

It is time Shelby Countians unite behind a common cause. Let our voices ring as one on this singular issue of great importance. We are often divided by our national and state politics. We are even on opposite sides on many local issues.

But we cannot let our differences and even apathy hold us back anymore. We must rally behind this common goal: Save our Post Offices!

Why? Because it’s important. This is not an abstract debate. We’re not talking about obscure data with minute percentage tweaks that really don’t affect anyone at any level.

We are talking about our rural communities, we are talking about small businesses, we are talking about seniors, and, most of all, we are talking about people. This affects all of us.

The recent announcement by the Postmaster General concerning the end of Saturday mail deliveries is a policy change that will have devastating consequences for everyone. The lack of a sixth day of mail delivery may not seem like a major hindrance for most people, but consider the real implications. Seniors and disabled people who depend on mailed checks will be denied that extra day of mail, and that can mean some people who live financially day-to-day will have to wait until Monday to receive their only source of income.

Businesses that rely on immediate mail delivery 6 days a week will be crippled by the loss of a full day of correspondence. Clients will become unsatisfied, people won’t be paid on time, and jobs could potentially be in danger.

I work in such a business, and I know firsthand how necessary Saturday mail delivery is to our operation. All of this is unacceptable.

But this single policy change underscores a larger issue that has been ignored for far too long: our leaders do not support our rural communities. The scaling back of postal services affects this one constituency much more disproportionately than all the others.

Small towns and rural areas not only rely on their local post office, but they also survive by it. It’s part of our identity.

All across the country post offices are closing in small towns and rural communities. Yet again we are threatened with the close of the Bagdad Post Office here in Shelby County.

Bagdad is my community. That’s where I hope to raise my future children. That’s where I will build my family’s foundation. That’s where I have always called home.

We cannot let this happen. If Bagdad loses the post office, we lose our name. No longer will people who live in Bagdad be able to use that name as their address.

We will be incorporated into other communities, Half will be Shelbyville, others will be Pleasureville, some may even be Frankfort. The loss of our post office means much more than the loss of a building. It is an essential part of our community.

Bagdad is just one example. This has already happened to other communities in Shelby County, and we must stop it now before we continue to lose these services.

We the people must let our voices be heard. Each of us owes it to our community to contact those who represent us and tell them to save our post offices! We must flood the offices of U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie, Sen. Mitch McConnell and Sen. Rand Paul with demands to stand up for our rural communities and support more funding for the U.S. Postal Service.

We then must contact state Sen. Paul Hornback (R-Shelbyville) and state Rep. Brad Montell (R-Shelbyville) and urge them to do the same.

You see, you’ve got to write a letter. You’ve to pick up the phone. You’ve got to say, “Sir, my community depends on our post office.”

You’ve got to tell them, “Mister, my home town cannot suffer these cuts to our postal service.”

You’ve got to speak up and tell them how you feel.

Why? Because it’s important.


Austin Redmon, a resident of Bagdad, represents Shelby County Young Democrats.